Virus in my flower border

Dear Julian

I am writing to you in desperation, I have a problem in my organic flower border.  My bizzy lizzies and petuinias have been dessimated by a virus.  It is a squidy white sustance that attacks the stems at the base and they eventually die.  I have removed all problem plants but have been told that the virus could be still in the soil for next year.  I grow a lot from seed and it is very upsetting to see all my hard work destroyed and that the virus has come in from another garden.  My neighbours aren't  experienced gardeners and as I have a problem with ants this year I am going to try your new ant nematodes next spring.

My question is there any other way of getting rid of this virus so I can plant the border next year as i grow everything in the garden aimed at the butterflies and bees I have been told in the past to enter our garden competition but now that is very unlikely.  Please help what can be done to get rid of this virus? Hoping u can be of help. 


Karen Galloway

Dear Karen

I suspect the problem is a disease rather than a virus and most likely a soil borne one. I would suggest you try Grow Boost from Harrod Horticultural. This contains a beneficial fungi called Trichoderma. This out competes and protects plants from soil borne diseases. It is supplied in a sachet and you water it in. It is not harmful to any insects, wildlife or plants. I would suggest you water some into the infected bed now and repeat next spring prior to planting. It is more of a preventative treatment than curative, so may stop all the infestation now but will help build up beneficial fungi in the soil to counter the problem in the future. I hope this helps.

Regards Julian